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Area students hope to gather 100,000 pounds of food and $50,000 during this year's 'Fill the Dome' event

It's a project that can do so much good, it's scary. At least, that's what metro-area high school and community leaders think. The "Fill The Dome" project is back, and the Metro Student Council Ambassadors hope this year's attempt to cover the fl...

It's a project that can do so much good, it's scary.

At least, that's what metro-area high school and community leaders think.

The "Fill The Dome" project is back, and the Metro Student Council Ambassadors hope this year's attempt to cover the floor of the Fargodome with food for area food shelves builds on the foundation laid by last year's event.

In a news conference at the Fargodome today, area students said they're aiming to gather 100,000 pounds of food - 20 percent more than last year - and $50,000 to ease hunger.

"We wanted to continue the legacy," says Joe Burgum, a sophomore at Oak Grove Lutheran School.

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Many area residents will get their first exposure to the food drive tonight and Halloween night, when area high school, middle school and elementary students plan to "Trick or Can" for the project, gathering food door to door instead of candy for Halloween.

Organizers say this year's project will build on last year's experience. Much more effort will be made to get the area's big colleges and universities involved, they said, including drop-off points around North Dakota State University and Minnesota State University Moorhead.

The group is also taking donations online at www.fillthedome.org . Starting Friday, every dollar donated online will be matched, up to a total of $25,000.

Dean Hornbacher, president of Hornbacher's Foods, handed over a $10,000 check to the Fill The Dome project and said his stores will serve as community drop-off points for food Nov. 17-23.

"It was very easy to say yes in a very short period of time," to taking part in the project, Hornbacher says..

Steve Sellent, executive director of the Great Plains Food Bank, says every can of food and every dollar the students can gather will be put to use in North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota.

Setup for the event at the Fargodome will be Nov. 23. Food dropoff will take place Nov. 24, and there will be a news conference on Nov. 25 to wrap up the event, before the food is packed and taken to the Great Plains Food Bank for distribution throughout the region.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

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Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583

Helmut Schmidt is a reporter for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead's business news team. Readers can reach him by email at hschmidt@forumcomm.com, or by calling (701) 241-5583.
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